Calico Rock Museum & Visitor Center Hosts Cedar Ridge Students & Other Museum News!

Today, the Calico Rock Museum & Visitor Center hosted gifted and talented students from Cedar Ridge Schools in Newark. The students completed the Crime Scene Detective in the Tomlinson Art & Science Center. This is an interactive exhibit complete with an actual crime scene, interviews of suspects, and crime lab testing stations used to solve the crime.

The students also used fusion to apply science and art. It was a great day of learning and sharing our museum with these students.

Tomorrow night, the museum foundation will host a Mexican Fiesta at the Printing Press Café. All proceeds will support the new robotics learning center at the Tomlinson Art & Science Center. For reservations, call 870-297-6200.

This week, we accepted several new pieces that will be shown very soon. The family of the late Bobby K. Hayes donated photographs from Calico Rock that are framed in hardwood flooring made in Calico Rock (Thank you, Mark Hayes). Connie Barksdale has given the museum an historic chamber pot, an original painting by Anna King, and a painting from a Delta artist. We have secured the original whistle and depth finder from the Ozark Queen steamboat, this is quite a find! We have also received several interesting pieces from local businesses from Junior Watts and a Blue Back Speller from Carolyn Wiseman. All of these items will be on display soon.

A few weeks ago, we obtained the beauty shop furniture that Jaclyn Smith used in the movie The Bootleggers. These pieces are already on display in the Murphy Gallery.

It’s been a busy spring welcoming tourists to town, hosting the Arkansas Museums Association conference, and beginning the process of converting our museum artifact catalog into a new software program that will allow us to one day provide on-line searches of every item in our collection.

As always, we thank you for your support of the Calico Rock Museum & Visitor Center. Learn more at

Calico Rock Museum Foundation
104 Main Street
Calico Rock, Arkansas 72519

Ginger Smith joined OGTC in 2014 as a volunteer, and has lived in this area since 1972 when she moved to be near her parents, the late Doss and Vivian Burgess. Her late father was Independence County Appraiser and any time family, whether kids or grand kids, came to visit for even a short time, he would take them to A.D. Hill’s grocery store, and get them a soda pop and candy bar, see the talking bird there, and end up “checking out the great White River.” All the kids and grands have played on the banks there, picnicked, and played on the old train. Ginger is adamant, since she moved to Batesville, there is just no other place to raise a family. Her love for the area and desire to help promote it in her professional capacity led her to seek volunteering, and Charlie Morris, whom she met when she was a typesetter at the Daily Guard Newspaper, put her in touch with Cathy Drew, Executor Director of OGTC. She has been on board since then and says she has loved everything she has done and is proud to represent North Central Arkansas.
The last 20 years of her employment she worked for the late County Judge David Wyatt, West Elementary School Principal Jerry Harris, and Circuit Clerk Claudia Nobles and Judge John Kemp. At the Guard Office she says she made friends for a life time, and then the West Elementary teachers, students, and their families grew close to her forever. Her last job she was hired in a newly created position to collect felony fines and restitution. She was so proud that after three years she more than tripled the annual revenues that she retired! Her part-time retirement job was with the ortho docs, Drs. Allen and Angel where she also met many people from all over the area, and made another set of new friends! She is a published writer and has also written feature articles for the Batesville Guard TV Guide and the Arkansas Democrat Gazette.
She has a daughter, Misty Long Sparks, son-in-law Dloyd Sparks, and three grands, Dalton Lee, Victoria Lynn and Anna Rose, who own her heart, and three more heartbeat grands, Nico and Corbin of Washington, and a late granddaughter, Ginger Savannah. Her late husband, Ken Smith, was the Batesville Postmaster.
Totally retired now, Ginger offers her time and writing abilities to OGTC as she travels around the state and visits with so many nice folks, writes reviews, and tries to be a worthy representative for Ozark Gateway Tourism. She is a people person who really cares for all God has blessed us with in our beautiful state of Arkansas in the United States of America.